Are you a Nats fan? Then you’re going to want to be at the Art of Transformation event on April 26!

We’re raffling off two INFIELD BOX tickets to a 2018 (regular season) home game! Sports Illustrated predicts that the Nats will win the World Series this year so if you’ve never seen the Nats play, then this is the year to go! (Infield Box tickets donated by the Washington Nationals)

But you can only win if you’re at the Art of Transformation event — buy your ticket today by CLICKING HERE.

Your support of  this event is so important to our clients, especially those who use art as a therapeutic tool. In addition to raising critical funds for our arts therapy and other programs, your ticket purchase, sponsorship, and/or gift will help us cover the costs of our meal program for our Day Program participants.

Every year we strive to find unique venues and transform them into art galleries to showcase our clients’ original artwork and raise awareness about mental illness and our work. This year is no different! We are very grateful to Crowell and Moring for donating their beautiful space at 1001 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW (complete with a deck overlooking Pennsylvania Avenue).

In addition to a wide variety of artistic styles and mediums, guests will enjoy tasty bites; mingling with friends, staff, Board members, and clients; and a chance to win awesome prizes in our popular raffle drawings, including round trip tickets (donated by Jetblue), infield box tickets to a Nats game (donated by the Washington Nationals), and gift certificates donated by local businesses.

Your support of  this event is so important to our clients, especially those who use art as a therapeutic tool. In addition to raising critical funds for our arts therapy and other programs, your ticket purchase, sponsorship, and/or gift will help us cover the costs of our meal program for our Day Program participants.

Please don’t wait until the last minute! CLICK HERE to buy your ticket or sponsorship, help sponsor a client to attend the event, or make your gift today.

What do you give to a person who says they don’t need anything but you still want to give them a little token of appreciation?

Complement your holiday greeting with a postcard letting your recipient know that a gift to McClendon Center was made in their name (or in their honor). The holiday postcard design features artwork created by one of our clients, and measures 4″ x 6″; there is also space for a personal note on the back. Cards come in sets of 5 for $25, including shipping, and can be purchased using our secure link (purchase cards) or by sending your check or money order to:

McClendon Center
Attn: Development
1313 New York Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20005

For the third year in a row, McClendon Center is recognized for its excellence by the DC Department of Behavioral Health. We are one of the two community behavioral health providers to earn a five-star Provider Scorecard* rating, which reflects the hard work and dedication to our clients by our staff and leaders as well as by our clients’ commitment toward recovery.

*The Scorecard evaluates 20+ Community-based mental health providers for quality of services, adherence to Federal and District regulations and policy requirements as well as financial compliance. The sections that comprise the review this year are: Essential Information, Assessment, Crisis & Relapse Planning & Responsiveness, Treatment Planning, Service Provision, Teaming, and Care Management.

Jayne O’Donnell, Healthcare Reporter for USA Today speaks with Dennis Hobb, Executive Director of McClendon Center, about his concerns over the possible repeal of Obamacare.

“One of the little-talked-about effects of the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare, was to boost access to mental health care for the poor. For people like Mouketou [— a client of McClendon Center], access to mental health care can mean the difference between being able to hold down a job or not.”

Click HERE for the complete NPR article.

One of the more important roles Human Resources plays in supporting employees is creating a stress free process for seeking time off to address mental health needs.

With limited sick time and high demands at work many organizations don’t make it easy or comfortable for employees to take time off. Sure, many organizations offer health insurance that provides mental health coverage, but with limited evening and weekend appointments available in the mental health community working professionals are stuck between a rock and a hard place. Taking time off from work, the very work that may be contributing to the decline in your mental state, can add an immeasurable amount of stress and anxiety.

Don’t lose hope! In addition to employment laws in place to provide job protection for medical leave, here are some tips to help navigate taking time off from work to see a mental health professional.

1.    Family Medical Leave Act, better known as FMLA.
The FMLA was enacted to provide job protection to employees who needed time off of work to manage serious health conditions for themselves, and/or family members for whom they were responsible.

Employees are not expected to know whether or not FMLA applies to their organization, but  they should. The FMLA applies to worksites that have 50 or more employees within 75 miles. Even if an organization qualifies to adhere to the FMLA employees must have worked for the organization for at least 12 months and at least 1,250 hours in the last 12 months to qualify for leave under this federal law. The one caveat to qualifying under the terms listed would be that many states like the District of Columbia have their own FMLA policy that organizations must adhere to in lieu of the federal guidelines outlined here.

A serious health condition defined: 1) inpatient medical care; 2) pregnancy or prenatal care; 3) a health condition lasting three consecutive days coupled with on-going treatment by a healthcare provider; 4) a chronic, serious condition such as asthma, diabetes or epilepsy for which the person is under supervision by a healthcare provider; 5) any period of absence for multiple treatments such as chemotherapy or kidney dialysis; or 6) a permanent long-term condition for which treatment may not be effective.

Depending on the severity of your mental health needs item # 3 on the list above would be the most appropriate for addressing time off to see a mental health professional. The best way to determine if you qualify is to sit down with someone in the human resources department. Be prepared to provide supporting medical documentation during the process, which is required by law.

2. Do your homework. 
It’s up to you to find the best fit when it comes to selecting a mental health professional. Sometimes the right fit starts with schedule availability.

Most health insurance companies offer the ability to search online for in network providers based on availability, such as weekend appointments. You can also call your health insurance provider and ask the representative to conduct a search on your behalf. The results are usually emailed or faxed to you by the representative.

Another option is to go out of network. Plans that have an out of network option will allow you to see any mental health professional, in most cases. Yes, it is at a higher upfront financial cost, but the long terms results will be worth it.

3. Sick and Vacation Leave. 
If you don’t qualify for the FMLA you should consider using any accrued leave. Following your organization’s policies regarding scheduling the leave can help ease the stress and anxiety around taking time off from work.

Always remember that nothing gets done without you, when it concerns you. Taking care of your mental health needs is no different than a trip to the chiropractor for an adjustment or your annual health check-up. Keeping you healthy and well is a team effort.

Saná Rasul, ACC, PHR, SHRM-CP, Director of Human Resources, McClendon Center. In addition to leading the human resource functions at the Center, Ms. Rasul runs a for-profit association, HR Girlfriends, which supports the professional and personal development of female HR practitioners

from the DC Behavioral Health Association Newsletter, June 27, 2017  |


DC Council FY 2018 Budget
$2.9 million included in the Health Committee markup to support a rate increase, pending conclusion of the anticipated rate study, was included in the final FY 2018 budget approved by the DC Council. Without these funds, even if the rate study showed favorable results, rates would have been unlikely to increase until the beginning of FY 2019, in October 2019. We hope these funds will make changes easier pending the rate study.


Fair Budget Coalition
As a member of the Fair Budget Coalition, the DC Behavioral Health Association (DCBHA) has closely followed the coalition’s recommendations for the DC FY 2018 budget. Fair Budget Coalition’s analysis of the final budget passed by the DC Council is as follows:

The good: Despite what you’ve been following on twitter, there really are some great things in this budget!

  • $40 million in start-up funding for Paid Family Leave
  • $2 million in transportation subsidies for adult learners
  • The elimination of the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) time limit
  • A mostly funded Neighborhood Engagement Achieves Results (NEAR) Act
  • $19 million for repairs for public housing
  • An increase in the reimbursement rate for Mental Health Rehabilitation Services and Adult Substance Abuse Rehabilitative Services
  • Housing subsidies for 459 chronically homeless singles and 340 families
  • Fully funded Produce Plus, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), and money for a cooperative grocery store in Ward 8
  • A fully funded Fair Criminal Records Screening Act

These are big wins to be celebrated- again — thanks to everyone who worked so hard to make all of this possible.

The Bad:  We know these housing resources do not come even remotely close to meeting the need for people who are experiencing homelessness or housing instability. For the 2nd year in a row, there are zero vouchers available to move the 40,000 people off of the DC Housing Authority (DCHA) waiting list. There are huge gaps in the Interagency Council on Homelessness (ICH) plan to end homelessness. Limited Project/Sponsor based Local Rent Supplement Program (LRSP) vouchers will make it difficult to build more units for extremely low income people. The Trust Fund is not fully addressing the affordable housing crisis in the city.

The Alliance program re-certification will still be burdensome, there is still only one air monitoring station around the city, and the Language Access for Education Amendment Act has still not been funded.

The Ugly:  In a final (and valiant) effort to fund some of these gaps, Council member David Grosso introduced two amendments that would have:

  • Kept the threshold of the estate tax at $2M
  • Limit the business tax cut to businesses that earn $10M or less in profit.

For a limited time, if you donate $25 (or more), we’ll send you a set of note cards as our appreciation.

The artwork on the note cards were created by our clients who exhibited their pieces at our Art of Transformation event. Each package contains one of each design pictured.

DONATE NOW to make your gift online.

Or, if you prefer, please send your gift to:
McClendon Center
Attn: Development
1313 New York Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20005

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